Expanding upon the stakeholder map with the group surfaced several links between actors on the Issue of housing affordability. One such connection was between Government and the RBA. The Coalition’s interest on negative gearing and capital gains tax policy issue is very little. In contrast, an internal memo from the RBA suggested that ‘curbing tax deductions from investors may be good’ [for the economy]. Our group talked about how these two opposing views from key stakeholders can exist side by side without any resulting action.
Reserve Bank assistant governor Malcolm Edey stated in a Senate inquiry into affordable housing in 2014, “If you have a tax system that excessively favours leveraged investor activity then that is going to cause distortions in the market.” The Reserve Bank by nature is conservative in their economic analysis and advice for the country so it was interesting to see how the Liberal Party so quickly dismissed the warnings as an ‘old document’ and merely ‘an internal memo’. This is despite the Sydney Morning Herald having published several mentions of the RBA’s caution over the last few years. (http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-05-11/janda-the-truth-about-the-rba-and-negative-gearing/7403418)
We looked at how the two actors in this connection share conservative economic values but that differences in hierarchy was blocking action on the issue and that quite simply the Government isn’t accountable to the RBA for taking any measures based on their advice. It seems the RBA’s statement was more beneficial as a media trigger (another key stakeholder), any beyond that their capacity for influence is weak.
The group also discussed other actors with interesting associations that included Business with Government, Personal portfolios of politicians and the issue, Business and Media, Majority voting demographic and the issue.